BBC pundit Mark Lawrenson predicts an Arsenal 2-1 win this Saturday lunchtime by telling the BBC website: “Normal service will be resumed this weekend in terms of Premier League teams going with their strongest line-ups after resting players last week – not just here, but across the division. In the Premier League, the Hammers’ form has been very up and down in recent weeks, but the same could be said about the Gunners.
I am going for an Arsenal win here, but it is clear that Unai Emery still has a lot of work to do. He has only been in charge for half a season and I think that, when they come up against the top teams, the same problems still remain.
The main issue is at the back. Would I back them defensively? No, absolutely not. Too many of their defenders are not Champions League level, which is the standard they need them to be at. Lawro’s prediction: 1-2″
Claret and Hugh say: The Hammers have been playing the Gunners since January 1906, first in the FA cup and later in 1923 in League One after promotion to the top flight. Arsenal has won 66 of those games since 1906, we have drawn 39 games with 34 wins for the Hammers in 113 years. So the statistics are against us as are the high street bookies who make Arsenal the Evens favourites for an away win at the London Stadium, a draw is at odds of almost 3/1 while a West Ham win is 5/2. That said Manuel Pellegrini has instilled a big team mentality in his squad and we do seem to raise our game for the big teams. We would love to put on over our North London rivals. COYI